Rykodisc Concludes Deal with Goodnoise
License Deal to Distribute Music Digitally [an original press release from the rykodisc.com website]
New York (February 3, 1999) - Independent record label and music industry pioneer Rykodisc today announced a licensing agreement with Goodnoise Corporation (NASD OTC:GDNO), the Internets leading seller of downloadable music, whereby Goodnoise will promote and sell music from Rykodisc's extensive catalog in the MP3 (MPEG 1, Layer 3) format. Initially, Goodnoise will sell more than 175 songs from 50 Rykodisc artists at 99 cents per track. Additional tracks from the catalog will be released in the coming months.
Under the terms of the agreement, Rykodisc will provide hot-links on its Web site (www.rykodisc.com) to bring consumers directly to the Goodnoise site (www.Goodnoise.com). At Goodnoise consumers can then purchase selected tracks by artists under the Rykodisc label. Artists include Frank Zappa, Bruce Cockburn, Morphine, and Richard Thompson, among others. Goodnoise will provide all hosting, coding, and e-commerce-related technologies to download the MP3 tracks. Financial terms of transaction were not disclosed.
Rykodisc's association with Goodnoise marks a significant milestone in the evolution of Internet music commerce. Rykodisc becomes the largest music label to adopt the format. MP3, an open standard for the digital distribution of music, has become one of the hottest trends on the Internet. Millions of copies of MP3 player software have been downloaded and, according to SearchTerms.com, MP3 is the second most popular search term on the leading Internet search engines. Goodnoise stands between the industry and the providers of unauthorized content. Rykodisc anticipates that the result of this deal will be a reduction in unauthorized downloads and maintenance of the economic value of music.
"Rykodisc is answering the strong consumer demand for music in the MP3 format," said Lars Murray, Director of New Media for Rykodisc, "and we want to give the MP3 consumer a legitimate alternative to unauthorized distribution, which is already pervasive on the Internet. This initiative provides for the artists and songwriters to get paid, and affords us opportunities to partner with retail in new and innovative ways, as we have with other new formats, such as DVD, and CD in its early gestation. Rykodisc has consistently remained a pioneer in the music industry by embracing rather than inhibiting technology that increases the consumer's exposure to quality music. Our agreement with Goodnoise - a pioneer in the downloadable music market - continues that tradition."
"Rykodisc is an icon of the independent music scene and offers one of the best catalogs available," said Gene Hoffman, president and CEO of Goodnoise. "Rykodisc and Goodnoise share a common objective - giving consumers the music they want the way they want it. We believe this agreement provides consumers with the highest profile content ever available in the MP3 format and that it will accelerate the growth of the overall market."
Two key artist managers supported the move:
"I think this is an amazing opportunity to get the music to the kids, especially in their dorms," said Morphine manager Deborah Klein. "We think this will whet their appetite for more Morphine music." Goodnoise is offering 7 tracks from Morphine in the MP3 format beginning today.
Billy O'Connell, Manager of Throwing Muses and Kristin Hersh is also an MP3 supporter. "MP3 represents for my artists perhaps the most efficient way to distribute music that exists outside the mainstream. It's our belief that MP3s promote diversity in music and create the imperative to set oneself apart from the mass of music as a whole," he said.
Since it was founded in January 1998, Goodnoise Corporation has established itself as a clear leader in the rapidly expanding market for downloadable music. Through relationships with artists and license agreements with leading independent record labels, Goodnoise has become the premier website for sampling and purchasing music in the MP3 (MPEG1, Layer 3) format, which has emerged as the de facto standard in the digital distribution of music with millions of users around the world. Goodnoise.com features a constantly expanding catalog of music and offers music fans complete albums for $8.99 or the ability to purchase individual tracks for 99 cents. Goodnoise is based in Palo Alto, Calif.
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